LABOR

  • The close relationship that developed between Mario Cuomo and the men and women of the union movement in New York State during the 1982 campaign for Governor has remained strong throughout his three terms. The Governor believes that the labor movement has played a crucial role in shaping our past and must continue to play a leading role in molding our economy in the 21st Century.

  • Governor Cuomo's unwavering commitment to jobs and opportunity has led to an unrivaled period of innovation and investment that has produced a net gain of 500,000 jobs, 50,000 new businesses and an economy poised for a solid comeback. This comeback is evidenced by 70,000 new jobs created in the last year and unemployment at the lowest level since 1990.

  • New York has invested $50 billion in its infrastructure under Governor Cuomo, building or repairing thousands of bridges, 21,000 miles of roads and overhauling New York City's mass transit system, making it cleaner, safer and more efficient. This investment has created hundreds of thousands of jobs for working men and women in New York.

  • The Governor is propelling the state toward the 21st Century with a massive $32 billion investment program called "The New, New York." This program will create more than 300,000 construction and permanent jobs across the state during the next five years.

  • Just weeks ago, Governor Cuomo demonstrated his ability to bring labor and management to the table and mold fair agreements when he helped settle the Long Island Railroad strike protecting the best interests of over 250,000 Long Island riders.

  • Last year, Governor Cuomo provided an important voice of caution against the dangers of NAFTA characterizing it as a "step backward" for the workers of this country.

  • In 1989, the Governor expressed his solidarity with the Eastern Airline strikers by urging President Bush to establish an Emergency Board to provide a cooling off period for the two sides to come together and by speaking out forcefully on behalf of the strikers who had negotiated in good faith.

  • During the 1990 Daily News strike, Governor Cuomo spoke out publicly and forcefully against the hiring of permanent replacement workers during such disputes. Subsequently, the Governor sent his Labor Commissioner to testify in favor of Senator Metzenbaum's bill to support the insistence on good-faith bargaining with regard to the hiring of permanent replacement workers.

  • The Governor has consistently supported New York State's workers -- increasing the state's minimum wage from $3.35 per hour to $4.25 per hour.

  • The Governor created a special labor team to enforce prevailing wage laws that ensure union workers get a fair shot at public works projects.

  • For those workers who have suffered dislocations or job loss due to the changes in our economy, the Governor has established one of the most aggressive retraining programs in the country. In Western New York alone, more than 40,000 steelworkers have been retrained through state programs.

  • To protect our children, the Governor signed the strongest child labor law in the nation.

  • Last year, the Governor issued guidelines requiring state agencies to consider a potential contractor's compliance with labor law and environmental regulations, employee and public safety standards, as well as previous performance with other state agencies before awarding them a contract.

  • The Governor has both improved worker safety and lowered worker compensation premium rates through the Worker's Compensation Reform package. Among other initiatives, this legislation improves rate equity for small businesses and establishes an Ombudsman Office responsible for resolving problems encountered by injured workers and their employers.

  • Governor Cuomo has asked state entities to evaluate the benefits of negotiating pre-hire agreements on a case-by-case basis to ensure as many union workers are employed as possible. The New York State Thruway Authority has recently signed such an agreement for construction on the Tappan Zee Bridge, and the Dormitory Authority is considering an agreement for upcoming projects at the Roswell Park medical facility.

  • New York's Department of Labor showed it wouldn't tolerate homework in the garment industry when it uncovered a scandal in the industry -- immigrant families (including children and grandparents) working all day for $1. The state's $153,000 fine against Teammate Fashions, Inc./Reflex Accessories Inc. was the largest fine for industrial homework in the state's history.

  • The Governor's Skilled Worker Emeritus Program is bringing the most outstanding skilled workers in the state together with the young people interested in learning about the skilled trades. Since its inception, this program has allowed over 72,000 people to learn about these trades from the very best workers in their respective fields.

  • The Governor is creating new employment opportunities across the state by requesting that New York housing agencies work with the Department of Labor to link housing developers with registered job training programs.